HOUSTON - Removal of debris from homes damaged by the floods of Hurricane Harvey has been the focus of city leaders since the storm.
Many streets in Houston are still lined by piles of carpeting, wood, furniture, appliances and Sheetrock that were tossed out after feet of floodwater seeped inside homes.
Officials said crews have been working nearly around-the-clock to remove the debris from neighborhoods, but residents in some communities are frustrated by the progress.
Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner on Friday provided an update on the process and what home owners should do to help with it.
Landfills now operating 24 hours a day
Turner said that at his request, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott ordered the Texas Commission of Environmental Quality to allow landfills in Houston to operate 24 hours a day. The change allows collection trucks to deposit debris at temporary sites, which will then be taken to landfills at night, he said. This allows trucks to spend more daytime hours in the neighborhoods, removing debris, he said.
More than 300 trucks are running
Turner said that more than 300 trucks are running throughout the city to remove debris, and the number is growing. He said the entire process is expected to cost more than $250 million, with 90 percent of the cost covered by the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
Report debris removal needs to 311
Turner said people should report needs for debris collection to 311. He said residents should only make one report per address, and multiple reports for the same address will not be accepted or speed up the process. The mayor said people should use the website or mobile app for faster service.
Debris collection schedule
Turner said there is no schedule for specific neighborhoods right now, but crews are working to remove debris as quickly as possible.
Several trips may be required
The mayor said additional trips may be needed to remove all the debris from a neighborhood. He said residents should move any debris that remains to the curb after crews make their first pass, keeping in mind that it must be placed within 10 to 15 feet of the curb.
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